What words would you use to describe 2020 so far? Maybe for you there are not even words to describe it! As we’re into the Advent season, now might be the time to slow down and ask: What might the Lord want me to harvest from this unusual season? Traditionally in the farming season, after the release of the seeds, the farmer experiences the harvest. This past year has been a season of release.
- We’ve needed to release control since much of what has been happening has happened to us not with us.
- We have needed to release our anxiety, our body's response when it experiences a loss of control.
- We've needed to release our expectations of what this year would hold for us as nurses, nursing students, and as followers of Jesus.
- We have needed to release the health of our loved ones and ourselves to God’s hands as many of us are on the frontlines of a global pandemic.
With the end of 2020 in sight, we would be remiss not to stop and ask what the Lord might want us to examine more closely: What does he want us to harvest?
In Scripture, the harvest theme appears over and over. Proverbs 10:5 instructs us to not miss the harvest. In our uncertainty and overwork, it could be easy not to set aside time to reflect, and in turn, miss what God has for us.
The New Testament books of Matthew and Luke explain that the harvest is ready, assuring the reader that the Lord has been at work before the harvesters, doing the sowing and preparing for the season. This work is largely unseen. We may not always see the Lord at work in our lives; he may seem absent, but rest assured, he is not. His hand has been upon us and our lives these past eight months. He has sown seeds, watered them, and protected them in this season.
In Galatians 6:9, we read that we will, in due season, reap a harvest from doing good. This season, I’m anticipating the good harvest I will reap that hasn’t been done in my own strength or power but God’s. His grace is sufficient for every situation I face at home, at school, at work. Because of his grace I can look with confidence at what the Lord is producing in me this season!
- What do you still want to release to the Lord this season? What do you need to release again (and again)? Spend time praying and doing that this week.
- Where can you find time in your day to spend with God, reflecting on this past season? What obstacles do you face in doing that? How can you overcome them?
- How does knowing it is the Lord's work through his grace that’s producing a harvest in your life bring encouragement and relief to you this season?
- Who in your life can you come alongside and encourage in this season to see the Lord’s harvest of grace in their life? When this week can you connect with them?
Jen Wojtysiak, BS, ThM, is NCF’s Student Ministries Director who is passionate about spiritual formation. She inspires and invests in nursing students, student leaders, and faculty advisors from her home in Wisconsin.